I actually knew this movie would get made 17 years ago. For the initiated, there are several prophecies in the film Boogie Nights. If you can read the signs correctly, there is much information that can be gleaned from it. It foretold that Marky Mark would be in a Transformers movie when he sang the theme song from the 1986 animated movie (Which was inspired by a line from the movie Iron Eagle and originally intended for Stallone’s Cobra… you’re welcome). It also revealed that John C. Reilly would become a great comedic actor and that Wahlberg would become a huge dick (There are other prophecies, but I’m not going to tell you them).
The first three are all basically the same. Something about a civil war, something about the allspark, Shia LaBeouf runs around with a hot chick as approximately 1200 supporting characters do nothing for two hours. Then I think there was something about Egypt and the moon. I tried to bone up on the Transformers saga once again so that the plot wouldn’t be too confusing but seriously couldn’t make myself sit down and watch them (Not even to spank it to Megan Fox).
What does the Fox say? “This is all I’m good for.”
This film is too long. Two hour and forty-five minutes too long. Does he think he’s Scorcese? Does he really need three hours to capture the subtleties of this story? There’s about three pluses and more minuses than a scorecard at the Masters. Reading this script is what drove Shia LaBeouf crazy. I’m pretty sure Ehren Kruger wrote it after watching Avatar, Prometheus, and Jurassic Park with his kids (Or whoever the children are that he has locked in his basement). Far in the past, the aliens that created the Transformers cyberformed Earth. Now, they want it destroyed… or something. For those of you not overly familiar with Transformers lore (So… all of you), the rowdy robots were created by a race called the Quintessons to be slaves. They eventually developed awareness and feelings and overthrew their creators. It’s kind of a reverse Terminator. But now, the aliens want them back! …or something.
To this end, Lockdown has allied himself with the CIA to hunt down the Autobots. He’s big and he’s bad and he’s got the help of a double secret CIA Transformer killing team called Cemetery Wind (You have to say it in your Batman voice. Cemetary Wiiiind). He claims he is doing this on behalf of the creators (Although they never explain why) but really seems only to be concerned with capturing and imprisoning Optimus (Although they never explain why). So an alien hires Boba Fett to track down Prime and trap him in carbonite. Got it.
The side plot, you ask? The CIA is turning the Transformers over to Stanley Tucci’s Steve Jobs/Lex Luthorian Joshua Joyce and his eeeeevil company KSI. He has broken down the genome of the metal (Science note- I’m pretty sure metals don’t have genomes) the Transformers are made of… Transformium! Joyce is using this to create his own Transformers to protect the Earth from the Decepticons by melting down the Autobots… who were already protecting us from the Decepticons. The joke is on him though. The lifeless head of Megatron isn’t so lifeless after all! It has been silently infecting all created cyborgs. He is remade into Galvatron (Farting all over the plot of the original animated movie).
Keep in mind, these last paragraph isn’t really the plot of this movie. It’s just stuff they threw in to set up the next Transformers movie (Or the next three, I’m sure). The actual plot is about Lockdown VS Optimus. After being jumped by Lockdown and Cemetery Wind in Mexico, Optimus has gone into hiding where he is discovered by eccentric junk collector/robotics engineer Cade Yeager (Wahlberg) and his comic relief sidekick Lucas. Times are hard on ol’ Cade. His attractive teenage daughter Tessa just won’t listen to him and he’s about to lose the farm! Once he discovers he’s got a Transformer though, his fortune is made! He’ll be able to create several patents off it, save the farm, and send his little girl to college.
The only problem is that after years of disappointment, Tessa and Lucas just don’t believe in ol’ Cade anymore. Lucas calls a hotline to report the Transformer seeking to cash in on a reward (That doesn’t actually exist *facepalm*). Cemetary Wind, who just happens to be hanging out nearby in Texas, springs into action.Optimus is their prime target (See what I did there?) so they actually threaten Tessa’s life to learn where he is. Optimus comes out of hiding and kicks their asses… kind of. Staying true to his Batman-like vow of never killing a human, he just seriously wounds several of them with explosions (Which probably killed a few… kind of like Batman). In the escape, we meet Tessa’s dirt track racing red bull sponsored boyfriend Shane, who she’s been dating behind Cade’s back. He bursts on the scene by jumping off a dune and knocking out a CIA agent with the tire of his car in mid-air (Because he’s that damn good!). That is correct. The shot in the trailer of the car flying through the air and hitting a man in the face with it’s tire is not a Transformer.
Also, during the escape, SPOILER ALERT Lockdown kills Lucas the human punchline (SPOILER ALERT Don’t see this movie), proving that Michael Bay watches Game of Thrones. Although his best friend is killed, somehow Wahlberg isn’t shown screaming in slow motion. He seriously barely reacts to it at all. So anyway, Cade, Tessa, and Shane all flee to the Autobots hiding place and we discover that there are only four other Autobots left. Optimus, upon finding out that KSI is melting down the bodies of his friends and enemies, decides to mount a rescue mission to recover the bodies (Or something) and then deuces! FUCK the humans! The Autobots are going home (Or something… wasn’t Cybertron destroyed? And don’t they not have a spaceship?) and we can fend for ourselves. This part of the movie actually kind of made sense. If I were Optimus, I’d be on the oil rag too.
“When you become the Prime, one weekend every summer you will bleed from your spark…”
So they spend an hour breaking into KSI. That’s correct, it turns into a heist movie for an hour. Joshua Joyce confronts them with the fact that he can create them and Optimus gets angry and leaves… without the bodies of his friends. Or whatever it was they went there for and could have easily taken. So this entire part of the movie was pointless. The CIA forces Joyce to activate his two battle ready Transformers (Even though they haven’t been tested) Galvatron and Stinger. They go in and soften up Optimus before Lockdown comes in and finishes him off. In exchange, Lockdown gives Joyce and the CIA one of the creators cyberforming seeds so they can make more transformium to build more Transformers.
Now, the Autobots have to get onto Lockdown’s ship and free Prime. That’s correct, it turns into a prison break movie for an hour. Tessa mistakenly ends up on the ship with Optimus so Cade and Shane go with the Autobots to find her. They find her, free him, and escape the ship without Lockdown noticing even though his army of sentient robot dogs (Which have fur for some reason) were chasing them. In the process, Wahlberg tries to reason with Optimus about his decision to forsake humanity… or something.
Meanwhile, back at KSI, it’s revealed that Megatron is alive and well in his new form and able to take control of all the created transformers. He plans to steal the seed and detonate it in a large city which would kill millions of people (Even though if he waited, KSI would detonate it in a remote region and use the transformium to build even more robots to add to his army in the future). That’s correct, it turns into a disaster movie for an hour. This is the point where the movie starts to get a little weird (You read that correctly).
There is an Asian actress in this movie named Bingbing Li. I did not make that up. She suddenly knows Kung Fu out of nowhere. Mark Wahlberg kills a highly trained CIA operative by throwing a football at him (Invincible represent!). Needing help, the Autobots release the Dinobots from the prison ship. Lockdown returns and starts picking up cars with a giant magnet and dropping them onto Hong Kong (For some reason, his giant spacecraft isn’t equipped with any lasers, guns, or missiles). Joyce has a sudden change of heart and becomes a good guy. Bumblebee STILL can’t talk. Why am I here? This movie is literally fucking me up so bad that my long term memory thinks I hated these toys as a kid. At this point, a bukkake of special effects crashes into your face and the movie ends with Optimus Prime flying into space with rockets he didn’t have in the other three movies.
There were actually things I enjoyed about this movie. There is a five minute stretch when the Dinobots show up that is cool. Kelsey Grammer actually plays a good villain, which I wouldn’t have thought possible. John Goodman is delightful as the voice of Hound, but that may be just because John Goodman is like Grandma’s biscuits, familiar, comforting, and full of gravy. Unfortunately, Kelsey Grammer, John Goodman, and Dinosaurs being your redeeming qualities would be fine… if it were 1992.
Anyone else remember this?
I once let Michael Bay convince me that Bruce Willis was an oil drilling astronaut but my brain cannot process Mark Wahlberg as a backwoods, down home, robotics engineer. Nor can I accept him as the overly protective father of a hot 17 year old. He’s no Liam Neeson. If they remade Fear with him as the dad I think he would just open the door and let nature take it’s course. He’s supposed to be from Texas, yet has no accent. They don’t even try to explain it with a throwaway line about him moving there from Boston (It’s wicked pissah haht in Houstin).
In contrast to my Chef review, Bay proves that you can’t improve a shitty recipe simply by getting better ingredients. Let’s go to our Michael Bay checklist, shall we?
This movie is bad on a level that I didn’t think was possible. It is the worst kind of bad, the bad that isn’t fun to watch. The kind of bad that makes you feel sorry for it. It wasn’t even satisfying to sit there and mock. This movie is the Special Olympics of my childhood being raped. Sure, there are people who will watch it and find it inspiring, but most of us would just prefer not to think about it. It is 1st Degree childhood rape. The kind of childhood rape where they know who did it and the guy gets off on a technicality… and then rapes your childhood again three more times (And then remakes Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles). I feel so bad for this movie that I’m going to stop making fun of it now and just talk about Michael Bay.
When Michael Bay was a child, he attached firecrackers to a toy train and filmed it. He ended up setting his room on fire and was grounded. This is a true story. It’s basically still happening, except that there’s no one to ground him anymore. He later was an intern for George Lucas, who taught him the art of succeeding early so that you can coast through the rest of your career. “It doesn’t matter if you make good movies” Lucas reportedly said, “As long as you make movies about something people love from their childhood, they’re going to make money. Oh, and sell lots of toys.” Bay worked on Raiders of the Lost Ark, which he thought was going to be terrible. This should give you an indication of his film expertise.
In his personal section on wikipedia it says he has two dogs. Michael Bay has no friends or family. The only people that stay around him are the ones who depends on him for treats (Megan Fox). Michael Bay is the Nickelback of directors. They came out of the gate with a couple of hits but haven’t changed anything and grown stale. The slick overproduction was once good and promising, now I can’t tell if these are bad or if I’m just not 14 anymore.
Fast forward to 2:07 and imagine if Wahlberg was still doing this 13 years later…
They are punch lines for critics and fun for the everyman to shit on. Despite the fact that they make millions of dollars I’ve never met a fan of either. No one defends them. Michael Bay actually got his start directing music videos. If he directed a video for Nickelback starring Nicholas Cage (The Rock gets a pass because two negatives equal a positive), I think everything good in the world would collapse in on itself. The Pope would start feeding stem cells to starving orphans. Bigfoot would be discovered but deny global warming and listen to Justin Bieber. Animals and Jennifer Lawrence would stop being cute on the internet. Nickelback is the angriest hangover dump you’ve ever taken and Michael Bay is the blood that lubed it’s escape. They are the dump that makes you wonder if you should go to the doctor. But despite all that, people keep paying money to experience them.
A Michael Bay movie is like dating a bartender. Sure, it looks pretty and it pays its own bills (By appealing to the lowest common denominator) but it will eventually act so crazy that it leaves you permanently scarred and slightly crazy yourself. They keep saying they’re going to quit and get a real job but the money is just too good. Bay doesn’t even say he’s going to quit and make real movies. He has responded to criticism by saying, “I make movies for teenage boys. Oh, dear, what a crime.” Well, I’ve got bad news for you, Michael Bay. You may not care… but I do. I didn’t want to do it like this, but I’m breaking up with you. My friends have been telling me to for a long time (And I know you’ve been cheating on me). I know that it’s not going to affect you. You’ll just start dating someone better looking and keep making insane amounts of money but this isn’t about you. I need to get my self-respect back and I can’t let you drag me down with you anymore. You’re ugly inside and there’s no amount of make-up, or boob jobs, or massive explosions that’s going to keep the world from seeing that. You need help. I hope you get it.
PS- I left your Nickelback album in your locker.
T-Bagz isn’t ready to see another director yet